Job’s Wife

There’s only one verse in the book of Job that tells us about his wife, and sadly it does not put her in a good light:

Job 2:9 “Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? Curse God, and die.”

But think of it from her perspective. Every loss that Job suffered, she suffered with him. Her husband’s means of income was lost. His standing in the community, and by extension her own, was destroyed because everybody assumed Job’s calamities were a result of some sin of his. On top of all that, her husband was suffering terrible illness that she could only helplessly watch him suffer through. And then there was the devastating loss of not one, but all of their children. As a mother she probably felt that loss even more profoundly than her husband did.

For her, everything she understood about how life was supposed to work had been completely gutted.

This woman was beside herself with grief and her faith was strained beyond the breaking point. She trusted God and it looked like all that trust had been betrayed. It’s no wonder her words are so harsh and so charged with emotion: “Are you still trusting in Him, Job? Can’t you see what He’s done? Curse (or deny) God and die!”

While he surely understood his wife’s anguish, Job does not mince words with her (some marriage relationships are just that way), and he answers with a stern rebuke:

Job 2:10 “But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil…?”

Job drove straight to the heart of his wife’s problem: her hope was in the blessings of God rather than in the God of the blessings.

What Job says makes it clear is that the God who gives us our blessings is also the one who authors our calamities. Who else would you rather have in charge of them? We can’t always understand why God brings trials into our lives – Job was never really told the reason behind his hardships – all we can do is trust that our God is good even when things go bad, and more specifically that He is always good to us.

The question we have to ask ourselves, whether in blessing or in loss, is: Do I truly trust that God is always good to me?

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